Deep Dives and Dolphin Hearts
21 January 2015: It's not easy being a dolphin. According to reports in the Christian Science Monitor, deep dives may not be good for dolphin hearts.
The physical exertion of chasing their prey on a single breath causes tachycardia – a spiked increase in heart rate.
Recently published research demonstrates that in over 73 percent of deep dives, the dolphin (or seal) experienced cardiac arrhythmia – an irregular heartbeat.
The findings 'suggest that the alternation between slowed heart rate and quickened heart rate resulted in this erratic cardiac condition.' To fully understand this effect, further research is required.